Documentation And Communication : Home Health And Hospice Agencies

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BACKGROUND OF PROBLEM Documentation and communication are constant challenges that healthcare providers face when seeking continuity of care for their patients. Every time a patient moves from a hospital to a nursing home, or from a skilled nursing facility to home health or hospice, the staff that cares for the patient is at risk for a gap in patient care and communication. Home health and hospice agencies rely heavily on Medicaid and other insurance for reimbursements in order to continue to provide care for their patients and keep the doors to their agencies open. Thorough and timely documentation is the key to ensuring proper reimbursement for nursing services and other therapies provided from insurance agencies. This same…show more content…
According to the Centers for Medicaid and Medicaid Services, “EHR can improve patient care by: • Reducing the incidence of medical error by improving the accuracy and clarity of medical records. • Making the health information available, reducing duplication of tests, reducing delays in treatment, and patients well informed to take better decisions. • Reducing medical error by improving the accuracy and clarity of medical records” (CMS, 2012). EHRs can also improve quality of nursing care by providing nurses with education on the latest in evidence based practices relating to their patients’ conditions. “In order to bridge the gap between research and practice and to improve the quality of care, evidence-based Clinical Practice Guidelines (CPGs) can be incorporated into homecare agencies’ EHRs” (Topaz, Radhakrishnan, Masterson, & Bowles, 2012, p. 25). By incorporating this technology, EHRs go further to empower nurses to make prudent care decisions based on the latest research on best practices. TECHNOLOGY There are two terms that are used in this discussion interchangeably and they are Electronic Medical Record (EMR) and Electronic Health Record (EHR). In general, electronic medical records are “are a digital version of the paper charts in the clinician’s office. An
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